PITCH Saturday, September 29 from 9:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at the Glickman Library on the University of Southern Maine campus in Portland.
FREE-TO-MEMBERS PITCH PANEL Saturday, September 29 at 2:30 p.m., all attendees and all MWPA members are welcome to attend a free panel discussion featuring Tristram Coburn, Monica Odom, Anjali Singh, and Saba Sulaiman, and moderated by Celia Johnson.
Tristram Coburn (Children’s, Nonfiction, Middle Grade)
Tristram Coburn has been the co-publisher of Tilbury House Publishers for the past 5 years. Prior to this, he was a literary agent and an editor for McGraw-Hill and Simon & Schuster, where he was the editor of such notable authors as Gayle Lynds, Clive Cussler and Richard Marcinko, among others.
Looking For: Children’s books, nonfiction, and middle grade that satisfy a need in the marketplace, whether about social justice, science and nature, diversity, etc., books that make a difference but also delight.
Tilbury’s Featured Authors: Michael Leanah, Reem Faruqi, Amy and Greg Newbold, Suzanne Slade, Licia Morelli, Margy Burns Knight
Samantha Fingerhut (Fiction, Thrillers, YA/MG, Nonfiction, Memoir)
Samantha Fingergut joined Compass Talent after teaching high school English in New York City public schools, with prior roles and internships at Chalberg & Sussman literary agency, The Susan Golomb Literary Agency, and the New Press. She is also a reader for One Story magazine.
Looking For: literary fiction; gripping thrillers or science-fi with a literary bent; young adult and middle grade fiction; and narrative nonfiction, including essays and memoir.
Featured Clients (at Compass Talent): Ben Fountain (Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk), Tom Bissell (The Disaster Artist), William Kamkwamba (The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind), Candace Bushnell (Sex in the City series), Nick Reding (Methland)
Jennifer Herrera (Fiction, Nonfiction)
Annie Hwang (Fiction, Crime Fiction, Speculative Fiction, Nonfiction)
Annie Hwang is a literary agent at Folio Literary Management where she represents literary fiction and select nonfiction. She is actively building her list and gravitates toward subversive voice-driven literary fiction; rich historical fiction where the setting takes on a life of its own; literary thrillers with dark psychological grit; and nuanced speculative/science-fiction that questions what it means to be human in the age of technology. Intersectionality and underrepresented voices occupy a special place in her heart and she is particularly drawn to braided narratives, complex characters, and layered plots. A California native and former journalist, Annie is constantly on the hunt for gifted storytelling that stretches its genre to new heights.
Looking For: Subversive voice-driven literary fiction; rich historical fiction where the setting takes on a life of its own; literary thrillers with dark psychological grit; and nuanced speculative/science-fiction that questions what it means to be human in the age of technology. Intersectionality and underrepresented voices occupy a special place in her heart and she is particularly drawn to braided narratives, complex characters, and layered plots.
Featured Clients: Xia Jia, Leland Cheuk, Janet Hong, Sequoia Nagamatsu, Deborah Hanekamp
Genevieve Morgan (YA, Fiction, Crime Fiction, Nonfiction, Memoir)
Genevieve Morgan is an editor-at-large at Islandport Press, where she specializes in literary fiction, nonfiction, and memoir. Her authors’ books have won top honors in the state three years in a row, receiving Maine Literary Awards for fiction, books on Maine, crime, and memoir.
Formerly, Morgan served as managing editor at Chronicle Books and co-founded a book-packaging company that produced a variety of works. She has written and edited books for Smith & Hawken, Williams-Sonoma, Starbuck’s, The Nature Company, Harper Collins, Chronicle Books, Borders Books, Islandport Press, and Hay House publishers.
Morgan’s own recent book, The Kinfolk, is the third and final volume of her award-winning MG/YA adventure-fantasy, The Five Stones Trilogy. Her fiction has won the Silver Moonbeam award for pre-teen fantasy and has been a finalist for the Maine Literary Awards. She is currently working on a sequel to her nonfiction book, Undecided: Navigating Life and Learning after High School and a new, as-yet-untitled novel for adults. [Photo: Kevin Bennett]
Looking For: Morgan, in acquiring for Islandport Press, is interested in unique New England voices and stories that evoke the spirit and sensibility of our region. She is most interested in high-quality literary fiction, hard-edged mystery (not cozy), historical fiction, and unique memoir that transcends personal history to tell a real tale.
Islandport Featured Authors: Kate Christensen, Jim Nichols, George Smith, George Danby, Deborah Corey, Gerry Boyle, Max Kennedy, James S. Rockefeller Jr.
Monica Odom (Fiction, Nonfiction, Author/Illustrators)
Monica Odom is an agent at Liza Dawson Associates, where she represents a variety of nonfiction, literary and upmarket fiction, and illustrators. Monica earned her Masters in Publishing: Digital & Print Media from New York University in 2014, and has a B.A. in English from Montclair State University. She was also schooled in bookselling and event coordinating at her local indie, Watchung Booksellers. She loves to see a personal project turn into something original and surprising, and is committed to the expansion of diversity and inclusivity in the publishing industry.
Looking For: Nonfiction by authors in the following categories: Advice/Relationships, Self-help/Self-Reflection, How-To, Crafting/Creativity, Food and Cooking, Humor, Pop Culture, Lifestyle, Fashion & Beauty, Biography, Memoir, Narrative, Business, Politics and Current Affairs, History, Science, Social Studies (including topics of: identity, race, gender, sexual orientation, socioeconomics, civil rights and social justice). Literary fiction and upmarket fiction (NO genre fiction). Illustrators with demonstrable platforms, preferably author/illustrators, working on nonfiction, graphic memoirs, or graphic novels.
Featured Clients: New York Times Bestselling author/illustrator Rachel Ignotofsky (Women in Science: 50 Fearless Pioneers Who Changed the World; Women in Sports: 50 Fearless Athletes Who Played to Win; Wondrous Workings of Planet Earth, Ten Speed Press); New York Times Bestselling author Morgan Jerkins (This Will Be My Undoing, Harper Perennial); Camille Chew (Basic Witches illustrator; The Astrology of You and Me illustrator, Quirk); Sharee Miller (Princess Hair; Don’t Touch My Hair, Little Brown Children’s); Cristen Conger and Caroline Ervin (Unladylike: A Field Guide to Smashing the Patriarchy and Claiming Your Space, Ten Speed Press); Tyler Feder (Dancing at the Pity Party, Dial); Keiko Agena (No Mistakes, TarcherPerigee)
Anjali Singh (Fiction, Nonfiction, Memoir, YA/MG, Graphic Novels)
Anjali Singh is an agent at Ayesha Pande Literary. In her twenty years in publishing, she has worked as a literary scout, an editor at Vintage Books, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt and Simon & Schuster, and as Editorial Director at Other Press. She is best known for having acquired Marjane Satrapi’s Persepolis and Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s Half of a Yellow Sun. Some of her recent projects include Arif Anwar’s debut novel, The Storm (Atria), a sweeping novel that covers over 50 years of Bangladeshi history; Bridgett M. Davis’ memoir, The World According to Fannie Davis: My Mother’s Life in the Detroit Numbers, forthcoming from Little, Brown in January 2019; and Sherine Hamdy and Myra El-Mir’s YA graphic novel about a Muslim-American girl’s coming-of-age, forthcoming from Kokila (Penguin) in 2020. As a literary agent, she is looking for new voices, character-driven fiction or non-fiction works that reflect an engagement with the world around us, memoirs, MG and YA literature and graphic novels for all ages.
Looking For: I’m specifically looking for literary novels, both adult and YA, that tell us something new about the world, as well as beautifully-crafted narrative nonfiction, and nonfiction that deals with social justice in some way.
Alexa Stark (Fiction, Thrillers, YA, Nonfiction)
Alexa Stark joined Trident Media in 2012 to work with Ellen Levine and her illustrious authors. Before coming to Trident, she worked at PEN American Center and at the Curtis Brown, Ltd. literary agency. She was soon promoted to First Serial Associate and sold stories, essays, and book excerpts to the New Yorker, Harper’s, Paris Review, The Atlantic, Tin House, N+1, and The New York Times, among others. Alexa is now actively growing her own client list and represents a range of literary and upmarket fiction as well as nonfiction.
Looking For: In fiction, Alexa is particularly drawn to literary debuts with a unique voice and perspective, character-driven suspense and thrillers, stories about dysfunctional friendships and families, fiction that delves into the surreal, and select YA. Above all, she’s looking for assured prose, captivating storytelling, and characters that come alive. In nonfiction, she is drawn to narrative nonfiction, cultural criticism, voice-driven essay collections, popular science, psychology, and women’s issues.
Featured Clients: Joseph Cassara (The House of Impossible Beauties: A Novel), Molly Patterson (Rebellion: A Novel), Carmen Segarra (Noncompliant: A Lone Whistleblower Exposes the Giants of Wall Street ), May Cobb (Big Woods), Abigail DeWitt (News of Our Loved Ones: A Novel)
Wendy Strothman (Nonfiction, Memoir)
Wendy Strothman founded her literary agency, The Strothman Agency, in 2003. Before that she was publisher of Trade & Reference at Houghton Mifflin where she oversaw all adult, reference, and children’s publishing, and edited five books with Philip Roth as well as works by Arthur Schlesinger and John Kenneth Galbraith. As an agent, she represents only nonfiction and works with scholars such as Pulitzer Prize winner David Kertzer; historians David Blight, Martha Hodes, naturalists like Kenn Kaufman, and journalists including Kathryn Miles, Amy Ellis Nutt, and James Scott. For seventeen years, Wendy was a trustee of Brown University and she serves on the Board of the Association of Authors Representatives and the Copyright Clearance Center. She’s a weekend handweaver and catboat sailor and has two grown children, Andy Metzger, a Boston-based journalist, and Meg Metzger, a documentary film editor. She and her husband John Bishop and dog Farley Mowat divide their time between Greenwich Village and mid-coast Maine. [Photo: Nancy Crampton]
Looking For: Books that change the way we think about things we take for granted, that tell stories that readers can’t forget, and advance scholarship and knowledge. History, narrative nonfiction, narrative journalism, science and nature, and current affairs are specialties. Very occasionally memoir. No fiction or poetry, please! I look for strong writing by acknowledged experts in their fields or writers with a particular passion for their subjects.
Featured Clients: Kathryn Miles, Portland-based author of Superstorm (Dutton), Quakeland (Dutton), All Standing (Simon & Schuster), Adventures with Ari (Skyhorse), and the forthcoming Killers on the Trail (Algonquin); James Scott (Pulitzer Prize finalist), author of Target Tokyo (Norton) and the forthcoming Rampage (Norton); Amy Ellis Nutt, author of NYT Bestseller Becoming Nicole (Random House); Raymond Arsenault, author of a forthcoming biography of Arthur Ashe (Simon & Schuster); David Blight, author of a forthcoming biography of Frederick Douglass (Simon & Schuster)
Saba Sulaiman (MG/YA, Fiction, Romance, Crime Fiction, Memoir)
Saba Sulaiman is an agent at Talcott Notch Literary Services, a boutique agency located in Milford, CT. She holds a BA from Wellesley College and an MA from the University of Chicago, where she studied modern Persian literature. Being a first generation immigrant who is constantly negotiating her own identity and sense of belonging in a place she now calls “home,” she is committed to highlighting more diverse voices with compelling stories to tell; stories that demonstrate the true range of perspectives that exist in this world, and address urgent and often underexplored issues in both fiction and non-fiction with veracity and heart.
Looking For: In children’s fiction, she is looking primarily to build her Middle Grade and Young Adult lists, and is particularly interested in contemporary realistic stories. In adult, she’s open to literary, upmarket, and commercial fiction, category romance (all sub-genres except paranormal), tightly plotted, character-driven psychological thrillers, cozy mysteries à la Agatha Christie, and memoir. She is not looking for cookbooks, military/political thrillers, or historical fiction.
Featured Client: Managing Editor of The Rumpus Lyz Lenz’s Belabored, a humorous exploration of the myths and medical misconceptions surrounding pregnancy, offering irreverent cultural criticism interwoven with personal experiences and historical anecdotes, and using the experience of being pregnant in America as a lens to examine our society’s deepest-held beliefs, acquired by Remy Cawley at Norton.